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Wales licensing: now letting agents must be trained too

It now appears that new legislation covering the private rental sector in Wales will involve mandatory training for letting agents as well as landlords.

Yesterday we reported that the Welsh Government had launched a scheme called Rent Smart Wales which will - from a date to be announced later this year - require licensing of all private landlords in the principality. 

The scheme will require landlords to register their properties and undertake an unspecified form of training to obtain a licence if they wish to manage the property themselves. 

Now it has emerged that letting and management agents will also be required to become licensed and will also have to be trained. 

A welter of documents relating to the scheme have been posted on the internet, with most of it available here. 

The critical part of the documentation reads: “Training for agents has yet to be set, but will cover both the agents’ relationship with tenants as well as with their client landlords. Classroom based and online training should be available in future.”

The amendments to the Housing (Wales) Act 2014 introducing this scheme gives powers to individual local authorities to administer the legal aspects of the system as well as register landlords and grant licences. 

After the initial year of operation, in autumn 2016, the range of enforcement powers in the legislation - including fixed penalty notices and prosecutions - will be introduced and landlords and agents found to be ignoring the new obligations will have action taken against them by local authorities and the licensing authority. 

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